Texas, Oklahoma face off in first round of Big 12 championship

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Texas looked like a dark horse contender for the conference championship early in Big 12 play, but a three-game losing skid brought the Longhorns back down to earth. However, they have an altogether improved season that has allowed them to rise to the No. 4 seed in the Big 12 tournament, up from No. 5 last season.

Now the Longhorns will face rival Oklahoma for the second time this season. If they win, the Horns will potentially face West Virginia again in the semifinals.

The Longhorns and the Sooners played earlier this season in Norman, and Texas came away with a 1-0 victory. Sharis Lachappelle recorded the deciding goal in the ninth minute in a physical game where Texas fouled the Sooners 15 times and forced more than twice as many saves.

The Longhorns have not won the conference tournament since 2007 and will begin their campaign to win it again Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. at the Blossom Soccer Stadium in San Antonio. The winner will advance to the semifinals Friday.